Romans 11:33-36

Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways! “For who has known the mind of the Lord, or who has been his counselor? Or who has given a gift to him that he might be repaid?” For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

No Man

This weekend, in an effort to have some relaxing “family fun-time”, we all sat down to watch a movie together. As we sifted through the Dish Network pay-per-view options, we landed on Yes Man, starring Jim Carrey. I vaguely remembered favorable reviews I had read somewhere—probably Christianity Today. I will attribute the missed mark to my memory rather than CT’s review. The movie had a few truly funny parts and it was not as vile as most comedies. But that doesn’t mean it was good. As a matter of fact, it was disturbing.

I do not consider myself a legalist in any way, shape, form or fashion. But maybe I should be. Because at least if I was a legalist, I would not have subjected my family to the embarrassment of watching a display of oral sex between a man and woman old enough to be his grandmother. So much for enjoying a light-hearted movie with my wife and children.

That is not humorous. It is shameful. In our quest to be relevant and “free in Christ” are we flippantly sacrificing our quest for holiness? I think so.

Over the past few days, as I have reflected on the consequences of purposely inviting those images into my home, I came across this article by Andree Seu, a blogger for World Magazine.

I don’t want to wait until everything is clearer on my deathbed; I would like my deathbed clarity now, when it can still do some good. I expect that one of the things I will regret on that day “when the keepers of the house tremble, and the strong men are bent, and the grinders cease because they are few,” is the movies and TV shows I allow myself to see.

In truth, this allowance has been more drift than philosophy, but to the extent that you can dignify half-conscious notions with the status of convictions, mine have been the following: (1) I am no legalist, and (2) one must be informed about the culture.
The interesting thing about these self-justifications, as I view them at the moment, is that they are nowhere to be found in the Bible. Oh, some crafty person can wrest them out of the Word “by good and necessary consequences,” as they say. I can imagine the texts rustled to the rescue: Galatians will be a rich vein. And Colossians 2:21, where Paul excoriates teachers of “Do not handle, do not taste, do not touch,” who put rule keeping for true piety.

What is unequivocal in the Bible is the command to love God with all your heart. What has no ambiguity is the call to pure eyes that alone will see God. What is not fudgeable is that we are to put God’s word above the word of man.

Evan Thomas went around Wales during the great Revival of 1906 telling folks to “put away everything doubtful in your life.” I like that. You have to think about that one. I sometimes get deathbed inklings. I feel quite sure that when the death dew lies on my brow, I will not think it had been necessary to see a raunchy movie in order to be better informed about the culture.
Convicting… but I need to be convicted of holiness more often.

Hebrews 12:11


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